UP polls: Alliance partners SP, Congress fight over seat sharing

Posted By: PTI
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Lucknow, Jan 27: The Congress and the Samajwadi Party are haggling over seats in Amethi and Rae Bareli--the parliamentary turf of Congress president Sonia Gandhi and her son Rahul--in poll-bound Uttar Pradesh.

The Congress, which managed to get 105 of the 403 seats under the seat-sharing deal with the SP after hard negotiations, is in no mood to give up its claim over all the 10 seats in Amethi-Rae Bareli.

Rahul Akhilesh

Sources said the party was perturbed as none of the five candidates declared by its alliance partner earlier has not been withdrawn by the SP. "The SP had announced five candidates in these assembly constituencies before the alliance was sealed, but since then no name has been withdrawn and local Congress leaders are especailly perturbed over the issue," a senior Congress leader said.

Though both the sides are more or less agreeable to a broad understanding that the Congress will get six and the SP four, local leaders and workers are not ready to give up either Amethi or Gauriganj Assembly seats from where the SP has already announced its candidates, he said.

The Congress, which is looking for a major share, also wants freedom to choose its nominees rather than blindly following the "sitting-getting" formula. "Giving tickets only on the basis of previous performance will only benefit rivals and we cannot afford to see reverses for failure to forsee them," he said.

Without assessing the situation and winnability of each candidate before fielding them would be like helping the Bahujan Samaj Party, he said, citing the example of Sareni constituency in Rae Bareli.

The SP has given ticket to its sitting MLA in Sareni, but situation there has undergone a major change since 2012 and now even their supporters are against them, he said, apprehending that the seat could go to the BSP in case the same candidate is repeated.

It is essential that both the alliance partners work towards assessing each others' strong and weak points seat-wise or else it will cause more harm than benefit to the ideals for which both the parties have come together, he said.


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